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Forestry Grant Schemes

Your local Forestry Adviser provides private landowners with free, independent and objective advice and can help you answer the following questions:
  • How a forest enterprise can improve farm and household income
  • Timber and non-timber benefits
  • The effect on other farm schemes
  • How to get the job done right first time

Select your county to contact your local Forestry Adviser: 


Financial assistance is available to:

Establishing a forest

The following forest establishment schemes are available:

  • Afforestation Scheme (focus is on timber production)

  • Native Woodland Establishment Scheme (focus is on nature creation/conservation)

  • Agro-Forestry Scheme (planting of trees while using the same land for grazing or silage purposes)

  • Forestry for Fibre Scheme (planting of trees for energy purposes)

  • NeighbourWood Scheme (development of woodland amenities for public access, use and enjoyment)

The above forest establishment grant schemes are available from the Forest Service of the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine under the Forestry Programme 2014-2020. The grants available in these schemes generally covers all of the costs associated with the establishment and early management of a forest. The rate of afforestation grant and annual forest premium available under these schemes depends on the quality of the land and the type of tree species it can grow.

Download the current afforestation grant and premium rates (198 KB)

The First Instalment of the grant (75%) is payable after the planting stage and includes operations such as ground preparation, drainage, fencing and planting.

The Second Instalment (the remaining 25% of the grant) is paid four years after planting, once the trees have become fully established and are free-growing. This payment covers maintenance works that will often be required (e.g. vegetation management, the replacement of failures).

Annual forest premium payments are payable for a period of up to 15 years.

Applications are submitted to the Forest Service (Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine), and approval is issued following assessment. The first instalment is then paid after planting, subject to adherence to scheme conditions and various environmental guidelines.

How do I get the planting done?

The option you choose should reflect your circumstances and the amount of time you can allocate to planning, organising and doing the work. It is important that your investment is managed to the highest standards to ensure you reap the rewards as the timber matures.

Ensure that you have a written contract between you and your Registered Forester in place before any work begins. All contracts should be referred to a solicitor.

The Forest Service sets the standards and approves grant and premium payments. Once you have decided to plant, you can choose how to get the job done from the list of options described in this leaflet (0.7 MB) available for download.

No matter which option you choose, all the paperwork at pre-planting, post-planting and at the second instalment stage must be prepared by a Registered Forester acting on your behalf. These are professional foresters who are working in the private sector and who are registered with the Forest Service. A List of Registered Foresters (365 KB) is available from your local Teagasc office or from the Forest Service, Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Johnstown Castle, Co Wexford. Tel.: 053 9163400.

You are responsible.

Prior to the payment of the second instalment grant at Year 4, you as the forest owner must be satisfied that the forest has been maintained in accordance with best forest practice and only if you are happy with your plantation should you sign the year 4 form.

No matter which option you choose the Forest Service Inspector assesses a sample of sites at pre-approval stage, post planting stage and at year 4 stage, so do not assume that standards have been checked by a Departmental Inspector.

It is important to keep in mind that you, as the applicant, have a responsibility to the Forest Service for your plantation (not your Registered Forester).

Insurance against potential hazards such as fire and windthrow is strongly recommended to protect your investment.

Planting land is a major decision (consider these important questions prior to making a final decision) and you should be satisfied that the establishment option you choose is right for you. Talk to your local forestry development officer who will help you with free, independent and objective advice.


The following downloads are available:

Who’s who in the forest industry
  • Forest Service (Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine) administers grants and felling control while COFORD co-ordinates forestry research in Ireland.
  • Teagasc provides independent advice and training to all private landowners. Teagasc should be the first port of call for all landowners thinking of planting land. Your local forestry development officer will be able to provide you with free, independent and objective advice.
  • Registered Foresters (90 KB) are forestry companies registered with the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food and provide commercial establishment and management services to landowners.
Other forestry-related grant schemes:
Please note:
Regulations may change over time. Before making an application, please check that you have the most recent information.